Robin Hobb book reading

I attended a book reading by Robin Hobb a few days ago.  This was a lovely event and boy is she popular – there were no seats without bums on them!

We listened to a reading from Robin’s latest novel, The Willful Princess and the Piebald Prince and then the floor opened onto some earnest Q&A.  Talk about your serious Robin Hobb fans!!  Wow, the questions were pretty intense and the answers very interesting to say the least.

    Two different covers – which do you prefer???

I confess I’ve only read one book  by Robin Hobb – Assassin’s Apprentice – which I loved and will definitely read the rest of the trilogy but the rest of the audience clearly knew A LOT (even if I was an amateur/johnny-come-lately).   I didn’t ask anything but was a very curious listener (and also, unfortunately, due to lack of preparation I have no photos! – phone battery died just as I was walking in.)

I had no idea that Robin Hobb wrote under another name (Megan Lindholm) which was interesting (in fact Robin Hobb is apparently also a pen name!).  She told us about all the different jobs that she’s held down over the years that have helped to flavour the way she writes and how to a degree she misses those jobs because of all the daily interaction with people whose small snippets of stories made up part of her life.  She was also asked about how she manages to write about characters of the opposite sex so well – apparently she just imagines that they’re humans’ – okay, she did have a serious answer to this question!  I really liked that she shared so much information about her writing experiences and seemed such a lovely person.  Plus – one particular member of the audience asked if she enjoyed turning the readers around with characters turning them from a character that was not liked to one who the reader’s come to love.  To be honest I can’t remember her full response, I think she mentioned that she doesn’t consciously make such a decision during the writing process, but she did at this point say that if we enjoyed dark fantasy, fantasy where we probably won’t be able to sleep at night (and by the way I’m not quoting verbatim here) and more to the point where our original opinion of the character is likely to change massively, then we should read the Broken Empire series by Mark Lawrence (Prince, King and Emperor of Thorns) – a series of books where you can’t help rooting for the anti-hero Jorg!  Of course I’ve read these so I was able to sit looking happy (or smug!)  But, more to the point I love that type of generosity in an author – plus I love hearing what books they like to read anyway as I’m just plain nosey.

Anyway, all in all a really great book reading experience.  Seriously I think I could become addicted to meeting authors in this way!  Not to mention it’s so nice to put a face to the name and add a bit of character to an author whose works I’m just starting to get into and expect to thoroughly enjoy.  I’ve had a look at all of RH’s books and there are quite a few to say the least – can anybody out there advise me if I need to read these in order – I’m reading the three Assassin books first but do the rest have to be read in order, are they from the same universe even???  Doh – all help gratefully received.


14 Responses to “Robin Hobb book reading”

  1. Elise

    I haven’t read anything by her yet, so I can’t help you out here. She is on my list of to be read-books and I’m looking forward to read her books, although I’m afraid that’s not gonna happen any time soon. (Also, can I admit that I thought Robin Hobb was a male writer?? Or are people gonna shoot me now? I’ll just go in hiding anyway!)

    I’m glad you had such a nice experience, lovely!

    • lynnsbooks

      Well, I’ve only read one book so I can’t quite categorise myself as her number one fan just yet although Assassin’s Apprentice was very good and she seems like a really genuine and lovely person to listen to and hear about.
      I suppose thinking somebody called Robin is a male is a fairly easy mistake really – I can’t remember ever thinking that but that’s because I saw a picture of her before I read the books so I’m sure I could have made the same assumption – let’s not break out the pitchforks just yet hey!!
      Thanks for the comment.
      Lynn 😀

  2. Erica Dakin

    She’s lovely isn’t she? Where did you meet her? I went to the event in Nottingham and it was fabulous! My advice would be to finish off the assassin trilogy (obviously), then read the Liveship trilogy. That’s set in the same world but with completely different characters, but there’s some linkage, and there’s one particular reason (which I can’t say due to spoilers) that has always made me wish that I read the Liveship trilogy before I read the Tawny Man trilogy. The Tawny Man trilogy then gets you back to Fitz. All three trilogies are among my favourite reads, they are awesome.

    She’s also done the Soldier’s Son trilogy, but strangely enough I couldn’t get into that one. I never even finished the first book. The hero in that book was just too goody-two-shoes (and too blonde!) for me to like him after such a conflicted character like Fitz.

    The Rain Wilds books will take you back to the world of the Liveships, but I can’t say too much about those. I’ve only read the first book of that (there’s four), and while I liked it, it’s still not given me that kick I need to go and read the second one.

    Hope that’s helped a bit!

    • lynnsbooks

      Thanks for that – it’s really helpful.
      I went to an event in Waterstones in Manchester. Her fans were so devoted. You could just tell by the depth of the questions – they obviously loved her books which was so nice to see.
      I loved the start of the Farseer trilogy and I’m really looking to reading more. I think that there’s going to be a Fool’s Apprentice which should be great – I love that character.
      Lynn 😀

      • Erica Dakin

        I was absolutely giddy at meeting her, and I was mainly hoping to stay dignified and not make a fool out of myself. She wrote a lovely dedication in my book and it absolutely made my week. That and the reply I got from Scott Lynch to my e-mail!

      • lynnsbooks

        Staying dignified in the face of your book heros isn’t easy is it! I went to a Neil Gaiman event recently – then queued up for about 3 hours and when I eventually got to the front I was completely tongue tied!
        And a reply from Scott Lynch – I hope you printed, framed it and put it on the wall – or is that too excessive!
        Lynn 😀

      • Erica Dakin

        I’ve certainly been thinking about it…

  3. Cath

    I’ve read the three Assassin books and the first Liveship Trader this summer. I read somewhere it was a good idea not to miss out the Liveship Trader books. I’m so glad I didn’t as I loved The Ship of Magic, possibly even more than the Assassin books.

    Thanks for sharing your experience of the reading!

    • lynnsbooks

      Wow, well in that case I better reading the Liveship Trader books as well!
      Thanks Cath
      Lynn 😀

  4. jenclair

    I started with the Liveship trilogy years ago, then moved on to the Assassin books, and finished with the Tawny Man trilogy. LOVED them, especially The Farseer trilogy.

    • lynnsbooks

      And I understand there’s going to be a Fool’s Assassin book – so something else to look forward to!
      Lynn 😀

  5. Maija Reads

    Ungh, I’m so jealous! Robin Hobb was having a signing in London a week ago, but I couldn’t get discounted flight tickets for that week. Instead I’m going to London next week. I would’ve wanted to meet her and get a book signed!

    I’ve read and loved the Farseer trilogy and the Tawny Man trilogy. They work well together since they both have Fitz and the Fool (who is my favourite). I have the first Liveship Traders book on my Kindle, and will read it next. I didn’t think I missed anything important by not reading the Liveship one before I started Tawny Man, but of course I wouldn’t know yet. There might be some little intricacies and tidbits that I missed?

    • lynnsbooks

      Hah, okay, thanks for that. I think I’m right that there’s due to be a further Assassins book – Fool’s Assassin. Had you heard that?
      Lynn 😀

      • Maija Reads

        Yeah, I was so stoked when I heard! It’ll be a whole new trilogy. Yay!

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